WikEd fancyquotesQuotesBug-silkHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extensionPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifierAnalysisPhoto linkImage LinksHaiku-wide-iconHaikuLaconic

The character was raised around a bunch of rough guys (or just one) and usually is thus dysfunctional in normal society, especially around women. The trope may use an exaggerated, Testosterone Overdosed version of masculinity.

This situation can be seen as overall positive for a male character as it can only make him "manlier". However, a girl in this situation often becomes One of the Boys or The Ladette and, in some cases, may never be seen as a true woman for lacking the mandatory Acceptable Feminine Goals. In milder cases, I Have Brothers may be invoked instead.

Often comes with the Unfortunate Implication that, in the absence of women, men cannot competently raise children, especially babies and little girls. Can set up a Double Standard for Real Life House Husbands and single dads, not to mention gay couples -- though perhaps the latter are exempt due to theoretically being more civilized than their slovenly, beer-swilling het counterparts.

Examples of Raised by Dudes include:

Anime and Manga

  • Goku in Dragon Ball was raised by his adoptive grandfather Son Gohan (up until Goku looked at the full moon, went Oozaru and stepped on him in his rampage), and much of the comedy of the early parts of the series was due to his complete innocence in regards to girls, to the point of initially not even knowing the difference between boys and girls. That last part might have less to do with his Grandfather being his only parental figure and more with being his only human contact up to that point in his life.
  • Guts from Berserk is a Byronic Hero who was raised mainly by his abusive stepfather which makes him generally reluctant to form bonds with people. Also, he doesn't seem that good with his own Creepy Child of a son either. His lover Casca on the other hand...
    • Show a little fairness, his son is a demon quite literally tainted by evil.
      • Furthermore, after he gets less demonized Gutts shows a great deal of care towards his son as well.
  • Asu no Yoichi: The eponymous character spent his entire life on a mountain with his dad and no other human contact so far as we know. He goes around town and to school in samurai clothes complete with a wooden sword, but he's pretty decent at talking to women, notwithstanding the two elder sisters' opinions or his misfortune at being the protagonist of a Harem Comedy.
  • Prussia from Axis Powers Hetalia, according to Hungary; possibly Hungary herself, which would explain her Bokukko traits. Belgium, the other token Bokukko is also hinted to be this, stating herself that she's surrounded by men.
  • Averted by Trowa Barton of Gundam Wing. He was taken in by a group of mercenaries after being lost for several years, with his only female contact apparently coming at age 10 or so. When he shows up in the anime at age 15 (or so), he's quiet but he can still function in everyday life without any problem.
  • Ranma grew up with only his amoral and martial arts-obsessed father for guidance. It shows.
  • Allen Schezar of Vision of Escaflowne is an interesting example. While we don't know exactly who "raised" him, his mother died and his sister disappeared when he was very young, and so he has probably only had male influences for most of his life (not his father, though). He is an exceptionally moral person, but he tends to put women on pedestals, and his over-protectiveness towards Hitomi verges on stifling. He's a notable example of how someone can be a really good person and a really bad boyfriend, and a lack of strong women in his life during his youth is probably the cause.
  • Motoko from Change 123 was raised by her three dads after her mother died. Although they are explicitly mentioned to be kind and caring, they insisted on training her in their respective combat mastery (karate, jujitsu, and swords/firearms). The resultant Training From Hell caused her to develop three additional personalities just to cope. Motoko (the "main" personality) is fairly feminine and well-adjusted, while the other three range from tomboyish to borderline Ax Crazy.
  • Minato used this as his excuse for why he had to sacrifice himself to seal the Kyuubi into Naruto instead of allowing Kushina to take the bijuu with her as she died, and thus being able to stay alive to raise his son.

Comic Books

  • Tulip from Preacher (Comic Book).
    • It should be noted that is portrayed as a positive thing.
  • Hellboy was raised at a military base, back when it was frowned upon to have women enlist.
  • Thrud The Barbarian was raised by berserkers. They taught him the four essential skills: fighting, fighting, drinking beer and fighting.


  • Three Men And A Baby.
  • Very nicely subverted by La Cage aux Folles and its American remake The Birdcage. A man who was raised by a gay couple (he was the result of a heterosexual fling by one of them, and his mother was never involved in his life) becomes a perfectly normal adult, whose ultimate breakthrough at the end comes from telling his fiance's family the truth about it, without any shame.
  • Subverted in Armageddon, in which Bruce Willis believes daughter Liv Tyler to have been Raised by Dudes, which she truthfully has. But in spite of this fact, and no thanks to him, she's a perfectly well-rounded and psychologically sound woman.
  • In Twins, Arnold's character is raised by scientists and his biological parents (all seven of them) are excluded. When he ventures into normal society, he is very much a fish out of water.
  • Sydney White has the titular character growing up with her dad and his construction worker friends. She is a well-adjusted girl, if only a bit confused when it comes to interacting with the preppy, soronity girls.


  • Doc Savage was raised by his father and a handpicked team of male tutors. It is mentioned in the novels as being why he has a poor understanding of the psychology of the female mind; one of his few weak spots.
    • Then again, how many men can truthfully claim a good understanding of the female mind?
      • Or how many women for that matter?
  • Mostly averted in Robert B. Parker's Spenser series. Spenser was raised by his father and his uncles, all of whom were tough as nails. Spenser turned out to be a Cultured Badass hero. However, while he's an excellent chef, very well-read, and gruffly charming around women, his rigid ideas about masculinity cause him problems in his relationship with Susan, and elsewhere. (E.g., it's why Rachel Wallace initially fires him -- he's incapable of passive resistance.)
  • Sydney White was this, as her mother died when she was young and she grew up with her father and his construction buddies.
  • The Suvi Kinos series tells the story of a girl raised by her five uncles... Hulking 7 feet uncles with doctoral theses and the social graces of a Neanderthal. The type of men who panic when the baby cries for the third hour straight, and the childcare book has no keyword for "alarm, audio".
  • Delved into in detail by Ethan of Athos

Live Action TV

  • Vina claims to be this at first in the Star Trek pilot "The Cage", acting awkward and unfeminine around Captain Pike because she was raised by a group of old male scientists.
    • Played straight in another episode of the original series where a young man was raised on a mining planet and only ever knew men. His first contact with a girl doesn't end so well.
  • Al (short for Alicia) in Step by Step features this in the Lamberts' backstory. Growing up in a house with a dad who owns a construction company, a Jerk Jock older brother, and a fart humor loving younger one, she became very much a tomboy who had trouble getting along with girls her age and got into fights fairly often. On the inverted side, Mark was the youngest son of the Foster family, with a beautician mother and two older sisters who are The Ditz and a deadpan snarking Granola Girl, respectively. He has problems mustering up any kind of masculinity, being a Hollywood Nerd who cringes from any kind of conflict (and is, not coincidentally, routinely beaten up by Al). Many episodes from the first few seasons deal with Al and Mark trying to adapt to having an opposite-sex role model, with varying degrees of success.
  • Rachel from Glee has two gay dads. She's socially stilted, being very... focused on singing, and having a viewpoint revolving around Musical Theatre and any tropes involved with that. Admittedly her biological mother has a lot of the same qualities, so some of it's an It Runs in The Family issue.
  • Robin in How I Met Your Mother was primarily raised by her father, who was also in denial about her sex and raised her as a boy. On finding her kissing a boy he said "I Have No Son" in shock. She's The Ladette, but socially capable.
  • Alexis in Castle was raised primarily by her single father who has sole custody. She is emotionally stable and intelligent.


  • In The Winter's Tale, the lost Princess Perdita is abandoned as a baby and raised by a Shepherd and his son. Slightly averted in that she seems to have grown up to be a perfectly well-adjusted young woman.

Video Games

Western Animation

  • The Venture Brothers never knew their mothers, being raised by Rusty and (thankfully) Brock. Rusty himself was raised by his Doc Savage-like father, in a life similar to Jonny Quest (and none of them turned out that well, including Jonny.)
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.